Long ago I stopped believing in coincidences. I don't know how God has the time, or even why He cares so much, but it seems to me that God orchestrates every detail of every day. There are just too many times that I've looked back on something in my life and saw the hand of God.
There are huge times... Abusive or destructive times when He delivered a rescuer in the flesh. And then not-so-huge times (in catastrophic terms)... When He's just lined up the right people to be in the right place at the right time.
A weekday afternoon in early August 2009 was one of those times. The boys and I had just presented the money raised by the '09 bike-a-thon to the foster agency during a luncheon, and we stopped at Chic-fil-a afterwards to play. Since we'd just eaten, I don't even know if we purchased a soda that day! We just came to play. The kids quickly tossed aside their shoes and busied themselves with two other children in the play area, while I sat on a bench with the mother of these new-found friends. She and I made small talk, which quickly turned to much deeper talk. Her husband was in seminary at the time, and they'd recently moved from the south. Mississippi, I think. We talked seminary, homeschooling, public schooling, bike-a-thon, support groups, sexual abuse, hope & healing, Women of Faith, kids' sports, church, etc. I think we both stayed way longer than we'd anticipated. We exchanged phone numbers and email addresses, and quickly became Facebook friends. We have often made tentative plans to get the kids together to play, but we hadn't seen each other again until last Thursday.
That was when I went for a job interview at her new homeschool enrichment center.
What I didn't know when we met nearly two years ago is that... I would return to college to finish my degree in Elementary Education. That I would fall deeper in love with writing and public speaking. That our family would be put in a position where I needed to return to work before our children were in school full time.
What Melissa didn't know is that... She would move to within about 25 minutes of my house. And that she would start a homeschool enrichment center in her new town.
But God knew. He has woven my life together with my friend Melissa's for this very purpose - and many others too! Through Melissa's invitation, God has opened the door for me to teach public speaking and writing to homeschooled children grades 1-8. He is giving me this incredible opportunity to learn and grow in my own abilities, while teaching kids to do what I'm so passionate about.
Everyday I am grateful for words and the ability to put a few together in coherent sentences. I have felt for some time now that writing and speaking are meant to play a big part in my future. This new opportunity has me so excited. I cannot wait to see where this leads!
Thank you, God, for the sweet friendship I've cultivated with Melissa. And thank you so very much for the opportunity to share this gift you've so generously given to me with your kids. Might these children and their families be blessed, as I am certain my family and I will be.
"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
"Everything has been created through him and for him. He existed before everything else began, and he holds all creation together." Colossians 1:16-17